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J. Farrell MacDonald
On a stormy night, a theatrical producer, his secretary, and playwright Prescott Ames are stranded when their car skids off the road and gets stuck. The three take refuge in the nearby home of Dr. Kent, a friend of Ames. One of Kent's patients, who is staying at the house, is acting strangely, and the others in the house tell the newcomers that she is behaving this way because it is the anniversary of her husband's murder. At dinner, the group begins exchanging accusations about the murder, when suddenly the lights go out, and soon afterwards comes the first in a series of mysterious and fearful events. Written by
"People stranded in a country house during a storm discover that the home was the sight of an unsolved murder years before. During a dinner discussion of the incident, the lights go out and, when they come back on, they discover that one of the guests has been killed. Fearing for their lives, the guests attempt to find out the secrets behind the death before others can occur," according to the DVD sleeve's synopsis.
There are a couple of clever twists in this murder at the "Old Dark House" story, with the "Play within a Play" being its most interesting feature. However, the direction is rather ordinary, which serves to highlight a certain cheapness of production. Like most movies of this type, there is (or, should be) an ensemble of intriguing characters. Herein, only old-time Broadway producer Richard Carle (as Herman Wood) and his fey secretary Johnny Arthur (as Homer Erskine) maintain interest.
**** The Ghost Walks (12/1/34) Frank R. Strayer ~ Richard Carle, Johnny Arthur, John Miljan
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